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December 23, 2012

After all these years, Witten says Romo is still honest with him 'if I mess up'

Jason Witten says even he gets an earful from Tony Romo when it’s required.

“Oh, yeah. No question about it,” he said this week at Valley Ranch. “If I mess up or don’t run the route the way he expected, he’s going to let me know.”

But Witten is glad to take criticism from Romo, the quarterback he has caught the majority of passes from in his career, and the quarterback who could throw the pass that puts him in the NFL record book.

Witten needs six catches to set the record for most receptions by a tight end in one season. He has 97 going into Sunday’s game against the New Orleans Saints. The record is 102 by Tony Gonzalez for the Kansas City Chiefs in 2004.

“He’s been a critical part of it,” Witten said. “Not just this year and the way things have turned out or could turn out. We’ve spent a lot of time together, a lot of work, a lot of chemistry put in to go out there and do it on Sundays. I think the ability to check your ego every time you walk into this locker room, and a lot of time on the practice field to try and get in right – you’re always in search of that. I don’t know that we’ve ever looked at it and gone, ‘Man, that was the perfect game.’

“But when you can work together and be that honest and open with the quarterback, and vice versa with me, hopefully it will continue to be that way.”

But the veteran Cowboys tight end already has something he will treasure more about this season – playing in the opener against the New York Giants just 23 days after suffering a lacerated spleen that at the time seemed to threatened not only his season, but his career.

“It goes beyond catches,” he said. “That was a special game for me. That’s what you stand for. That’s what you want to be remembered as – beyond any catches – is playing in those situations.”

-- Carlos Mendez

Twitter @calexmendez



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